Alumni Life: Young Bulls

Ahead of the Herd

Twitter developer Max Bileschi on how he got his start

Max Bileschi (MA, BA, BS ’13) at Twitter’s Boston “nest.”.

Max Bileschi (MA, BA, BS ’13) at Twitter’s Boston “nest.”

By Kevin Stewart

“[UB] was one of the first stepping stones for me. It opened everything up.”
Max Bileschi

In the spring of 2013, 22 years old and fresh out of UB, Max Bileschi (MA, BA, BS ’13) was looking at graduate schools when he received the offer every young techie dreams of: an internship at Google.

So Bileschi spent that summer at Google Boston in Massachusetts, working on a program to maximize airline travel efficiency. No sooner did his internship end than he landed a job just a few miles away as a software engineer at Twitter’s Boston location. He’s currently working on a project called Amplify, which allows content providers to post videos that condense entire broadcasts down to Tweetable length.

“The two companies have similar environments,” Bileschi says. “Everyone works really hard, but we have a lot of fun.” The guy who sits next to Bileschi, for example, has been known to fire off Nerf gun rounds when he sees people slacking on their code reviews.

Before jumping headlong into the professional world, Bileschi distinguished himself at UB, graduating from the Honors College with dual bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mathematics, along with a bachelor’s degree in computer science. It isn’t easy to stand out at a school with nearly 30,000 students, but Bileschi wasted no time getting himself noticed.

By the end of his freshman year, he had sold the rights to an educational computer game, which he began designing in high school. His professors placed him on the URGE to Compute team, a rigorous, yearlong research apprenticeship awarded annually to 12 undergrads. Bileschi, the only freshman on the team, dove into cryptography (encrypting sensitive information) and began to realize just how far the university could take him.

“It was one of the first stepping stones for me,” he says. “It opened everything up.”

Another research project—using theoretical math to explore questions in genetics—helped Bileschi win a prestigious Goldwater Scholarship in 2011. He relished the work, having always been fascinated by what he calls the “cross-pollination between disciplines.”

Bileschi isn’t too concerned with where to go from here; he’s far too busy enjoying the present. “It’s like a dream,” he says. “My fiancée is going to school at Northeastern University, so we’re in the same city. I like my boss. I like my team. It’s wonderful.”

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